Group Chief Executive Officer CEO
As the son of company founder Gerry Pack, I have Holiday Extras in the blood, working on software for the business even at college. My official Holiday Extras career began in 2002.
My passion for travel and technology is embodied by the vision for Holiday Extras. To define and own the category for holiday extras and deliver on our less hassle, more holiday promise through software and service.
I became a director of Holiday Extras in 2005 and was part of the team that led the management buyout of the company that year. I also led the second buyout in 2018. CEO of Holiday Extras from December 2009 to January 2015 - I stepped into the role of Group CEO at the end of January 2015. Its been an epic journey so far. I've had a lot of help and support on the way. My mantra in life "no fun, no point". More Chief Energy Officer than chief executive, I find myself regularly asking "what do you need to make it happen".
Every day I spend at Holiday Extras is about making travel easier, better, hassle-free and more fun. I appreciate every booking and every customer. The best prices, best products, best service mantra drummed into me by my father.
Life before Holiday Extras
Despite eating, drinking and sleeping Holiday Extras from an early age, I managed to squeeze in studies at Cambridge Business College and Bournemouth University, emerging with a Diploma in Business and a BSc in Information Systems Management. Following a University placement at British Airways; travels around the world; and my first proper job as technical project manager at online travel pioneer, Lastminute.com; I was ready to come home.
I am addicted to adrenalin sports and can be found snowboarding, skiing, windsurfing, kiteboarding whenever I get the chance. If its windy I will duck out of the office for a few hours and hit the beach - just 10 mins from the office.
I am married to the amazing Amanda and have 3 lovely children, Emily, Thomas and Henry. I live near Canterbury in Kent.
My parents, Gerry and Carol continue to be there day and night for me. They have 7 grandchildren and counting! They are the most supportive parents anyone could have running what is still very much a family business. Although they are both non exec directors they play an active role in business but leave me to call the shots working with my boss and Chairman and all round nice guy Mark Smith. Steve Lawrence was CEO before me, he joined the business in 1993 when the turnover was just £4m a year, this year (2019) the business is heading toward £500m. I am more than grateful for all the knowledge, hard work and learnings Steve passed on to me as the 3rd CEO in the company's history. Steve retired to Arundel to have fun and spend time with his wife Rhona, much deserved, being CEO can be exhausting.
Photo of my wife Amanda with parents Gerry and Carol skiing in Serre Chevalier.
My father and I at the Holiday Extras office. This photo was taken for the 30th year of Holiday Extras.
My favourite place on earth is still India. A wise Nepalise man said INDIA stands for I'd never do it again! But I have many many times. Having backpacked there in 1999 I have been back with the family four times. Thanks to Trailfinders for organising 2 epic adventures in 2015 and 2016. Here's a pic of us all before dinner in Delhi.
Be one team is one of 5 values we live and breathe every day at Holiday Extras. This pic was taken on a leadership team trip to Verona. You can read all about it here: The Holiday Extras Leadership Walkshop to the Mountains of Verona. I can genuinely say I enjoy working with each and every one of the team here. Many have stayed with the business for more than 10 years, a few for more than 15 and a couple more than 20. Super smart and super committed to making Holiday Extras a great business and a great place to work.
This about sums it up. An image from a recent marketing campaign launching our Travel Better promise. They'd abandoned worry. They'd abandoned Britain. They'd abandoned everything except their smoldering passion; for they had found a way to Travel Better!
Be sure to follow me on twitter. I tweet about all things tech, surfing and the future.